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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(6), 2620-2637; doi:10.3390/ijerph7062620

Inadequately Treated Wastewater as a Source of Human Enteric Viruses in the Environment

* ,
Applied and Environmental Microbiology Research Group (AEMREG), Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, University of Fort Hare, P/Bag X1314, Alice 5700, South Africa
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 5 May 2010 / Revised: 4 June 2010 / Accepted: 4 June 2010 / Published: 14 June 2010
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Drinking Water and Health)
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Human enteric viruses are causative agents in both developed and developing countries of many non-bacterial gastrointestinal tract infections, respiratory tract infections, conjunctivitis, hepatitis and other more serious infections with high morbidity and mortality in immunocompromised individuals such as meningitis, encephalitis and paralysis. Human enteric viruses infect and replicate in the gastrointestinal tract of their hosts and are released in large quantities in the stools of infected individuals. The discharge of inadequately treated sewage effluents is the most common source of enteric viral pathogens in aquatic environments. Due to the lack of correlation between the inactivation rates of bacterial indicators and viral pathogens, human adenoviruses have been proposed as a suitable index for the effective indication of viral contaminants in aquatic environments. This paper reviews the major genera of pathogenic human enteric viruses, their pathogenicity and epidemiology, as well as the role of wastewater effluents in their transmission.
Keywords: wastewater; enteric viruses; gastrointestinal tract wastewater; enteric viruses; gastrointestinal tract
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Okoh, A.I.; Sibanda, T.; Gusha, S.S. Inadequately Treated Wastewater as a Source of Human Enteric Viruses in the Environment. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7, 2620-2637.

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